Niels Post, On Spam, Comment Spam #67; The Balcony, The Hague

Spam are the purulent pimples of the advertising disease we are all suffering from. Niels Post (1972) makes it a feast of superfluity.

What irritates you in your email box or in the internet as spam, becomes something strange and unintelligible when posted in a more monumental way in a space where nothing seems to be for sale.

In spite of the superfluity of spam Post works with great dedication on the clarity of his works. Post makes a subversion of a subversion.

At the moment The Balcony shows a spam work by Post on its shop window in Herenstraat, one of those wonderful small initiatives in The Hague.

Herenstraat is used by many people as a passage way between their work and the railway station.

Do they notice? And what do they notice?

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Niels Post and The Balcony, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE!!

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Cedric ter Bals & Philip Akkerman, Twiemæl Sterben; Galerie Maurits van de Laar, The Hague

Cedric ter Bals

For its exhibition Twiemæl Sterben (“Dying Twice” in an invented Germano-Scheveningen dialect) Galerie Maurits van de Laar has changed into a kind of war zone.

Cedric ter Bals
Cedric ter Bals

But don’t worry too much, as the battle is especially about the expansive way the human spirit can turn time and space upside down by sheer imagination.

Cedric ter Bals

So you may be shot at by colours and shapes that may or may not have any historic reference.

Philip Akkerman

The duo show has come about by a tight co-operation of Cedric ter Bals (1990) and Philip Akkerman  (1957).

Philip Akkerman
Philip Akkerman

Ter Bals presents his recent picture novel Tagebuch Oskar von Balz (Diary Oskar von Balz) about which i have already written extensively in Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read that article (in Dutch).

Philip Akkerman
Philip Akkerman

Akkerman, of course, won’t need much introduction as the uncurable self portrait painter.

Philip Akkerman
Philip Akkerman

No doubt Akkerman’s works are self portraits but on the other hand they are not, as they are also reflections on painting and its traditions, from medieval to post-modern, or rather a mix of it.

Philip Akkerman (Portrait of Oscar ter Bals)

Looking at them, one may think of different styles but they are always clearly in the first place works by Akkerman, who defies the usual linear idea of history.

Cedric ter Bals (Portrait of Philip Akkerman)

That is where he meets his much younger colleague Ter Bals, to whom he has given much space to arrange the show.

Cedric ter Bals
Cedric ter Bals

Some of Akkerman’s works even drown more or less behind the scene here and there.

Cedric ter Bals

Click here to read the article about Ter Bals in Villa La Repubblica (in Dutch).

Philip Akkerman

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to the artists and Galerie Maurits van de Laar, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE!

Façades of The Hague #94

Anonymous façade in Casuariestraat, once stockroom of a renowned piano dealer in the adjacent Lange Houtstraat, now part of a dancing and restaurant.

This street in the old city centre with its peculiar name was once called Sperlingstraat after one of its owners, Pieter Sperling.

It is said that in the 17th century there was a tavern called De Casuaris (“The Cassowary”), a place so questionable that the street allegedly got its name from it.

Cassowaries were thought to be quite lascivious and potent birds.

© Villa Next Door 2019

All pictures were taken in March 2017.

Bertus Pieters

Façades of The Hague from #72 onwards: https://villanextdoor2.wordpress.com/category/facades-of-the-hague/

Façades of The Hague #1 – 71: https://villanextdoor.wordpress.com/category/facades-of-the-hague/

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Tirzo Martha, The Dematerialisation of the Five Commands in the Five Senses; Public Sculpture Gallery, The Hague

Today a new work was installed in the public sculpture gallery in the city centre, commonly known as the Sokkelproject (“Pedestal Project”).

The work is by Tirzo Martha (1965) (you may remind his wonderful show at Museum Beelden aan Zee last year) and is called De dematerialisatie van de vijf geboden in de vijf zintuigen (“The Dematerialisation of the Five Commands in the Five Senses”)

It promises to be a valuable addition to the whole series.

It is a collage of different objects, that could be seen as a totem amidst the crowd in the city centre.

With its guardian on top it may in a way remind you of Femmy Otten’s And Life Is Over There in the same gallery.

The sculpture will be officially unveiled next Thursday (29 August 2019) in front of Town Hall and the Public Library.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Tirzo Martha and Stroom, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE!

The renovated Museum De Lakenhal, Leiden

Leiden’s municipal Museum De Lakenhal was reopened this year after a renovation of some years.

A few days ago i visited the museum to see the renovations.

Marjan Teeuwen
Marjan Teeuwen

Two new and modern exhibition rooms were added to the stately 17th century building for exhibitions of present day art.

Marjan Teeuwen
Marjan Teeuwen

At the moment photographs by Marjan Teeuwen (1953) and Karin Borghouts (1959) are on show.

Both deal with architecture, its demolition and its rebuilding.

Both spaces are quite beautiful, with a curved ceiling and a panorama window on one end.

The new wing has its own entrance and is, as such, not really connected to the rest of the museum; which doesn’t mean there is no modern and contemporary art on show in the main building.

Roy Villevoye

The rest of the museum tries to find a link between the history of the city and its art and artists from both Leiden and elsewhere.

Roy Villevoye

Roy Villevoye‘s (1960) Preparations (2009) aptly shares a room with the Lakenhal’s most prestigious treasures: the great works by Cornelis Engebrechtsz (c. 1462-1527) and his famous pupil Lucas van Leyden (1494-1533), both from Leiden.

Anonymous
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz

Engebrechtsz, for all his artistic shortcomings, was a great colourist, composition designer and storyteller and his two great triptychs (amongst smaller works) in the Lakenhal are no less than masterpieces.

Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz

Their wealth of rhythms, colours and themes may remind you of the polyphonic music of the time.

Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz
Cornelis Engebrechtsz

It was a great joy seeing them again (and indeed to see Villevoyes stunning work again).

Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden
Lucas van Leyden

The most famous work in the room is of course Lucas’ Last Judgement triptych (1527), which fortunately survived the massive iconoclasm later that century.

Jan Steen

Leiden also boasts a small but interesting collection of 17th century art, connected to Leiden, in its wonderful rooms with 19th century skylights.

Jan Wolkers

The so-called Pape Corridor shows works by novelist Jan Wolkers (1925-2007) who also was a prolific visual artist and who was born in Oegstgeest near Leiden and as a youngster he worked and painted there.

Jan Wolkers

His visual works on show are very much historic documents now.

During the 16th and 17th centuries Leiden became rich and important for its cloth industry and sales, for which Lakenhal was originally built (‘Lakenhal’ means Cloth Hall).

Some of that wealth can still be seen in the present museum.

Christie van der Haak
Christie van der Haak

The museum recently presented some new cloth designs, amongst others by The Hague artist Christie van der Haak (1950).

Isaac Claesz. van Swanenburg (late 16th century)

Floris Verster
Gert Germeraad
Gert Germeraad
Gert Germeraad

Lakenhal also has an important collection of works from the first half of the 20th century, interspersed with contemporary works like this moving portrait of the hapless Marinus van der Lubbe (1909-1934; also from Leiden) by Gert Germeraad (1959).

Bram van Velde
Jacoba van Heemskerck
Harm Kamerlingh Onnes

Harm Kamerlingh Onnes

Mark Dion

Only few artefacts will remind you of Leiden’s academic history, amongst others a phantom cabinet by Mark Dion (1961).

Erwin Olaf

Another point of some local historic chauvinism is Leiden’s heroic role during the Dutch Revolt (1568-1648), which inspired the museum to commission a monumental photo work by Erwin Olaf (1959), which is probably more impressive than all other works in the room.

The museum breaths a sense of history connected to the present day.

Mattheus Ignatius van Bree (19th century)

Renovated it has become pleasant, clearly structured, light and more diversified.

Gustaf Wappers (19th century)

It doesn’t pretend to be cosmopolitan and it isn’t geared to big blockbusters, which is a relief in between all those art museums in the country which try to be interchangeable international entrepreneurial art depots.

Willem Thibaut (late 16th century)

The Lakenhal Museum can be proud of what it has become.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to the artists and to Museum De Lakenhal, Leiden

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE!

Stormy Weather; De Kerk (The Church)/Museum Arnhem

I visited the exhibition Stormy Weather at Museum Arnhem, presently accommodated in De Kerk (The Church, St. Walburgiskerk in Arnhem) to write a review for Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read the review (in Dutch).

Stéphanie Roland

As i’ve written already quite extensively about the exhibition in Villa La Repubblica, i leave you here with some impressions and with the strong recommendation to go and see it all for yourself.

Mary Mattingly
Mary Mattingly
Mary Mattingly
Maarten Vanden Eynde & Musasa
Gayle Chong Kwan
Gayle Chong Kwan
Gayle Chong Kwan
Britta Marakatt-Labba
Marianne Nicolson
Marianne Nicolson
Brook Andrew
Brook Andrew
Brook Andrew
Steve Rowell
Frauke Huber & Uwe Martin

Frauke Huber & Uwe Martin
Moffat Takadiwa
Moffat Takadiwa
Moffat Takadiwa
Mary Mattingly
Marianne Nicolson
Marianne Nicolson
Maarten Vanden Eynde
Denise Ferreira da Silva & Arjuna Neuman
Denise Ferreira da Silva & Arjuna Neuman
Denise Ferreira da Silva & Arjuna Neuman
Denise Ferreira da Silva & Arjuna Neuman
Ursula Biemann
Ursula Biemann
Ursula Biemann
Ursula Biemann
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey
Serge Attukwei Clottey

Click here to read the review of this exhibiton in Villa La Repubblica (in Dutch)

Some stormy weather in Arnhem, when i left the exhibition…

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to the artists and to Museum Arnhem

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT RESPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE!

Façades of The Hague #93

This is the public, free and unguarded bicycle storage behind Centraal Station at Rijnstraat, as seen in 2017.

It is in a small area that constantly slips from the attention of the city’s gentrifyers, while they are working hard on the area in front of the station to change that into a circus of zombie urbanism.

I must say the bike storage, or bike hotel as it is often called, and its surroundings are as ugly as ugly can be, but, in a way, i like it even more for it.

It has a gloomy character of greyness, of metal, concrete and of unruly traffic.

Under it are taxi ranks.

Some people leave their bikes in the storage as if it is an ominous asylum where you can leave your pet behind in anonymous solitude, while other bikes are just stolen.

But most people store their bikes there just for a day to catch their train or bus to their work, and in spite of the somewhat sinister atmosphere you can quite safely do so.

The bicycle is an almost integral part of the Dutch body and as bikes, being eco-friendly monsters, are becoming more important, earlier or later the town’s gentrifyers and managers will find a ‘solution’ for this rather grim place.

Let’s hope they won’t for now, as the more unsuspected, maybe even darker places of town are part of its ambiguous character.

© Villa Next Door 2019

All pictures were taken in March 2017.

Bertus Pieters

Façades of The Hague from #72 onwards: https://villanextdoor2.wordpress.com/category/facades-of-the-hague/

Façades of The Hague #1 – 71: https://villanextdoor.wordpress.com/category/facades-of-the-hague/

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William Kentridge, 10 Drawings for Projection; Eye Filmmuseum, Amsterdam

I visited Eye Filmmuseum to write a review about 10 Drawings for Projection by William Kentridge (1955) for Villa La Repubblica. Click here to read the review (in Dutch).

These pictures were made with the intention to give myself a mnemonic of what i had seen and experienced.

Even while trying to make a choice from them for this blog, i felt being under the spell of these ten impressive animations.

Inadequate as they are i hope these pics will inpire you to see the exhibition too; and don’t forget to take your time!

Click here to read the review in Villa La Repubblica (in Dutch)!

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to William Kentridge and Eye Filmmuseum, Amsterdam

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT REPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE!

Lieven Hendriks & Thomas Trum, Modern Pictures for Modern Rooms; Billytown, The Hague

Lieven Hendriks

Modern Pictures for Modern Rooms was an exhibition in London in 1936 showing art buyers how to live with modern painting in a modern interior.

Lieven Hendriks
Thomas Trum

It happened to be the same year Charlie Chaplin’s Modern Times was released;1936 was in the middle of the world wide economic crisis.

Lieven Hendriks
Lieven Hendriks

In Modern Times people are struggling to take part in the rat race for survival in times of modernism, while in London a gallery tried another strategy to sell modernist art to survive the crisis in a country with a predominantly conservative taste.

Lieven Hendriks

More than 80 years later we live in a post-postmodern era but we still feel the tremors of the great social, economic and artistic modernist age that was the 20th century.

Lieven Hendriks

Rianne Groen – who closed down her gallery in Rotterdam only recently – co-operated with Billytown – the Hague platform that constantly struggles for new perspectives – to make a new Modern Pictures for Modern Rooms show with Lieven Hendriks (1970) and Thomas Trum (1989), in which she tries to take a fresh look at what decoration means in the context of art in daily life of the post-postmodern present.

Lieven Hendriks

Billytown’s space is hardly the place to create a cosy living room, but with some adaptations a place with familiar elements which suit a former school building was created as an environment for Hendriks’ and Trum’s works.

Lieven Hendriks

Abstraction (which historically became the hallmark of modernism) is clearly a principle of Trum’s lively material improvisations, while Hendriks brings back abstraction into hyper-reality with his trompe l’oeil paintings.

Lieven Hendriks
Thomas Trum

With its big windows the art doesn’t just seem to give context to Billytown’s space but also to the reality of street life outside the gallery.

Thomas Trum
Thomas Trum

Trum’s monumental One Purple Line seems to become part of the square outside Billytown.

left: Lieven Hendriks, right: Thomas Trum

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Lieven Handriks, Thomas Trum and Billytown, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT REPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE AND REGRETS ANY IRRITATION IT MAY CAUSE!

Melle de Boer, De laatste romantische schilder (The Last Romantic Painter); The Kitchen, Billytown, The Hague

Schneeige Nacht!
Ihr dunklen Schläfer
Unter der Brücke
Von Zerbrochener Stirne
Tropft kristallner Schweiß euch

(Snowy night! / You dark sleepers / Under the bridge / From your broken foreheads / Crystall sweat drips) Georg Trakl (1887-1914), Fragment 11

As you have seen in this blog (and if you haven’t, subscribe to Villa Nex Door!) Melle de Boer (1972) and your blogger met in his studio last spring to discuss his new paintings and painting in general.

Little did i know that an exhibition of his new paintings would follow so soon in Billytown’s Kitchen.

Its title The Last Romantic Painter may sound both tongue in cheek and pathetic, but that doesn’t mean this show isn’t serious stuff.

It might be tempting to compare De Boer’s paintings to his drawings and his work as a singer-songwriter, but let’s not do that, as there are no drawings or songs in this exhibition.

His paintings try to strike a balance between the escape from reality (whatever that is, in any guise or disguise) and the embrace of the reality of painting.

Many details of the works may work associative, on the other hand they are pure paint and brushstrokes etc.

In these paintings the nights may be snowy, the foreheads may be broken or the sweat may even be crystal, but in the end the paint dictates its own way of thinking.

I was quite happy seeing this exhibition, also knowing that the best has yet to come.

© Villa Next Door 2019

Contents of all photographs courtesy to Melle de Boer and Billytown, Den Haag

Bertus Pieters

VILLA NEXT DOOR IS NOT REPONSIBLE FOR ANY ADVERTISING ON THIS PAGE AND REGRETS ANY IRRITATION IT MAY CAUSE!